RAINN: Marissa’s Story

“When I speak authentically and truthfully about my experience, I have power. I am not going away.” Marissa Hoechstetter was repeatedly sexually assaulted by the OB-GYN she saw during her pregnancy, the delivery of her twin daughters, and follow-up appointments. The perpetrator was well-regarded in the field and was recommended to Marissa by a friend. At the time of the incidents, Marissa trusted her doctor’s treatment and was focused on making sure her pregnancy went well. “With medical professionals, there’s often a legitimate reason for why their hands are on your body. There’s a gray area and the minute you step into their office, they have power over you,” says Marissa. “Looking back, there were a lot of things that felt odd, but I was pregnant and focused on my babies and after all, this person was the uncle of a close friend of mine.” During one visit after her twins were born, Marissa recognized that the behavior crossed medical boundaries and knew immediately that something was wrong. “I felt it happen and froze. I never went back.” Despite continuing to feel for years that what had happened was wrong, Marissa chose not to report because she was immersed in being a new mother and found herself minimizing her own experience in comparison to other stories of sexual assault. “It just kept coming back to me how wrong it was, but I had one-year-old twins and was working full-time. I didn’t have the ability to […]

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Once unwanted, these dogs are now on the front lines of wildlife conservation

Ideas TED Talks Nov 6, 2018 / Rebekah Barnett These incredible pups catch poachers, sniff out invasive plants and diseases, and more, thanks to the work of wildlife biologist and conservation-dog expert Megan Parker. What happens to those dogs that are just too much dog for people to handle? “You know them — you go to your friend’s barbecue, their dog is so happy to see you that she pees on your feet, and she drops a slobbery ball in your lap,” says Megan Parker (TEDxJacksonHole talk: Dogs for Conservation), a wildlife biologist and dog expert based in Bozeman, Montana. “You throw it to get as much distance between you and the dog as possible, but she keeps coming back with the ball. By the 950th throw, you’re thinking, Why don’t they get rid of this dog?” All too often, their owners reach the same conclusion and leave their pet at a shelter. Thanks to Parker and the team at Working Dogs for Conservation (WD4C), some of these dogs have found a new leash lease on life. They’re using their olfactory abilities and unstoppable drive in a wide variety of earth-friendly ways, working with human handlers to sniff out illegal poachers and smugglers, track endangered species, and spot destructive invasive plants and animals. Chai is shown here with a trainer. After a dog learns to recognize a particular scent, the education isn’t over — their handler works with them regularly so they maintain their skills. These days, you can find this […]

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Is it Passive-Aggression, or Just Fear of Expressing Your Needs?

By Mike Bundrant ~ 3 min read I wrote an article recently on the various ways in which passive-aggressive behavior can undermine and destroy relationships. And it certainly can do just that. But as I was outlining the behaviors and language typically associated with the passive-aggressive personality, I couldn’t help but feel that several of the traits and habits seemed […]

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New Resource: Rehabcenter.net

I added this great resource to Organizations Who Can Help, on the right at the top. Please take a look to see if they can help you or someone you know. Rehabcenter.net proudly offers an extensive list of centers, rehab programs and treatment facilities to choose from. It is important to keep in mind there are many different factors that […]

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Michael Phelps Speaks Out About Battling Depression, Anxiety

By David Konow 10/30/18 “I was so down on myself. I didn’t have any self-love and, quite honestly, I just didn’t want to be alive.”  Michael Phelps has won 28 Olympic medals, but despite his incredible history as a swimmer he’s also had serious bouts with depression, anxiety and alcoholism. Since getting help, Phelps has been very open with the public about what he went through, but he recently admitted on Today that he’s “struggling weekly” with his mental health. “From time to time, I’ll have bad days where I do go into a depression state,” Phelps said. “Being an athlete, you’re supposed to be strong and be able to push through anything. My struggles carried on through my career and I hid them well. There are so many people who struggle from very similar things that I go through and still go through… At times, it was a little scary and challenging to go through, but I found a way to get through it and I’m addressing these issues that I have.” Phelps has certainly come a long way since he hit his personal bottom in October 2014. Phelps said he was so engulfed in despair, he couldn’t leave the house for five days and felt suicidal. He admitted that he had “at least half a dozen depression spells” before this one. He recalled, “I was so down on myself. I didn’t have any self-love and quite honestly, I just didn’t want to be alive. It […]

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Highway to Hell *Part 2*

Childhoods antics which landed my brother or me in trouble.  I have to start with my favorite story, you’ll get a better idea of who I am. At recess in third grade I told the teacher I HAD to go to bathroom. NO, go back and play. Back to teacher few minutes later I HAVE TO GO! You’re just saying […]

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We Don’t Talk Much About Debt and Depression. This Blogger Is Changing That

Melanie Lockert remembers checking the traffic for her blog, Dear Debt, and feeling shocked at the results. Someone had found her site by searching, “I want to kill myself because of debt.” Lockert started Dear Debt in January 2013 after spending the previous year feeling depressed about her student loans. She posted monthly updates about her efforts to pay off […]

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About Me

I am a Survivor After years of therapy and my grandparents love, I was pulled from the abyss. I have a clear heart, no anger or self loathing. Not forgiving….forgetting, allowing me to move forward. Over the years, people brought sunshine into my life. I can’t thank them enough. You were like Angels dropping in when I needed a push or […]

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